Family law executive assistant Lisa King tells us about her running habit and why it doesn't matter how long it takes to complete the "couch to 5k", progress is progress...

I will be joining the Russell-Cooke runners/walkers/cyclists on 27 March for the 5k Re-Charge challenge. About 10 years ago I signed up to a Sports Relief charity run with my husband thinking I would smash it, regardless of the fact at the age of 39 I hadn't run since school sports day...

The charity run arrived and I made it round in one piece without stopping, but only just. My children and in-laws were watching and I had sponsors so there was no way I was failing! However, by the end of it my legs were like jelly, I felt faint and could hardly speak for 10 minutes afterwards. My husband went on to do five more miles without breaking a sweat. It was sobering to say the least.

So, my habit of running began due to basically being shamed into action.

I decided I needed to get fitter before hitting 40 so I began a weekly “mum jog” around the block, building up an extra road at a time until I was regularly running a route I found, which was about 3k. I then sat in my comfort zone smugly congratulating myself on my weekly run for years.

When lockdown arrived, I suddenly had more time in the week to dedicate to myself and my fitness and so I started running two to three times a week. Then, when the Russell-Cooke 5k challenge was announced, it gave me the perfect opportunity to improve my running and to attempt to reach 5k in two of my weekly runs.

I have moved up to 4k twice a week now and just need to add that 1k to my route by 27 March and I will have achieved the “couch to 5k” in 10 years.

Maybe I could reach 10k in the next 10 years, you never know!